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Bayer CropScience Provides a Glimpse of SeedGrowth™ Innovation

Research Triangle Park, NC (PRWEB) December 05, 2012

Soybean growers in the Midwest continue to struggle with sudden death syndrome (SDS), which was discovered in 1971. According to the Plant Heatlh Initiative, SDS is now considered one of the top four yield-robbing diseases in soybean and appears to be spreading. The disease is capable of devastating soybean fields, affecting some growers’ entire soybean crops and significantly reducing their yield even up to 90 percent in some years.

Bayer CropScience SeedGrowth™ (formerly Seed Treatment) is studying a product it believes will combat SDS and give growers a much-needed solution to this problem. This new product is a seed treatment that is applied directly to soybean seed and helps to control the Fusarium fungus that causes SDS.

“Sudden death syndrome often doesn’t show symptoms in the soybeans until it is too late for the grower to help their crop,” said Ethan Luth, SeedGrowth product manager at Bayer CropScience, “We know growers are frustrated with SDS, and until now, there hasn’t been a complete solution. However, trials of our new product are showing promising results, and we believe it will help growers to prevent losses from SDS.”

The fungal pathogen that causes SDS favors cool, moist growing conditions for infection. During soybeans’ early development stages, the infection invades the root system, but there are no visible symptoms until after flowering, at which time there are no known treatment options. The fungal infection suddenly becomes obvious as leaves display intervenial yellowing and necrosis, resulting in leaf drop during the critical stage of pod filling and effecting yield potential.

“When managing Sudden Death Syndrome, it is important to utilize an integrated approach,” stated Luth. “Our new SDS product will offer growers a partner to the current genetic tolerance available in many seed varieties today.”

Bayer CropScience has conducted a series of field trials to determine the efficacy of its new product against SDS. During the trial harvests, treated plants appear visibly healthier, display greater tolerance to SDS, and researchers are reporting an increase in yield. The product is still in the testing stages, but Bayer CropScience anticipates that the new SDS product may be available for purchase for the 2015 growing season.

In addition, Bayer CropScience acquired AgraQuest, Inc., a global supplier of innovative biological pest management solutions, in August 2012. This acquisition expands the existing biological pest control portfolio of Bayer CropScience centered on its successful VOTiVO® biological seed treatment that protects against pathogenic nematodes. It also allows the company to further leverage the biotechnology platform acquired through Athenix Corporation.

“Adding more biologicals to our SeedGrowth product portfolio allows us to bring seed companies and growers integrated solutions to the disease challenges they face,” stated Luth. “We believe that products based on biological modes of action also will complement the trait technology in our pipeline.”

To learn more about Bayer CropScience, visit or contact your local sales representative for product information.


About Bayer CropScience
Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, agriculture and high-tech materials. Bayer CropScience, the subgroup of Bayer AG responsible for the agricultural business, has annual sales of EUR 7.255 billion (2011) and is one of the world’s leading innovative crop science companies in the areas of seeds, crop protection and non-agricultural pest control. The company offers an outstanding range of products including high value seeds, innovative crop protection solutions based on chemical and biological modes of action as well as an extensive service backup for modern, sustainable agriculture. In the area of non-agricultural applications, Bayer CropScience has a broad portfolio of products and services to control pests from home and garden to forestry applications. The company has a global workforce of 21,000 and is represented in more than 120 countries. This and further news is available at:

Bayer CropScience Media Hotline, 1-877-879-6162, or

Beth Roden
Director of Communications & Bayer CropScience NA Coordinator
Bayer CropScience
Tel: (919) 549-2030
Email: beth(dot)roden(at)bayer(dot)com

Sara Nix
Porter Novelli
Tel: (404) 995-4516
Email: sara(dot)nix(at)porternovelli(dot)com


Find more information at

Forward-Looking Statements
This release may contain forward-looking statements based on current assumptions and forecasts made by Bayer Group or subgroup management. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the actual future results, financial situation, development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. These factors include those discussed in Bayer’s public reports which are available on the Bayer website at The company assumes no liability whatsoever to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.

©2012 Bayer CropScience LP, 2 T.W. Alexander Drive, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709. Always read and follow label instructions. Bayer (reg’d), the Bayer Cross (reg’d) and VOTiVO® are trademarks of Bayer. For additional product information call toll-free 1-866-99-BAYER (1-866-992-2937) or visit our Web site at

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